Pathways to Children, a non-profit organization based in Minneapolis, has generously funded a 2-week applied public health experience in Kolkata, India for two U of M School of Public Health students.
Students will work with Jan Seva School—which is supported by Pathways to Children—Luxembourg nonprofit AMICALE, and the Society of Indian Children’s Welfare (SICW). Jan Seva provides healthcare initiatives and educational opportunities to children and mothers from destitute, poverty-stricken homes in Kolkata. Realizing that education and healthcare are the keys to empowerment and self-reliance, Pathways, AMICALE, and SICW collaborate to build, fund, and operate the Jan Seva School. In addition to the school there are many programs operating out of the facility, including a special needs program (UDAAN), maternal and pediatric clinics, and a program to job train mothers.
Students will work in the school and clinics, and will assist with activities such as needs assessments and evaluations that that will be used to gauge the success and effectiveness of the programs, thus creating new programming and implementing changes to create more reach and impact.
Participants will receive an extensive orientation prior to travel and ongoing debriefing during the three weeks to guarantee cultural understanding and immersion. Topics such as gender roles, dress, and manners will be part of the orientation. All participants will be offered a chance to meet with families in their homes, accompanied by a Jan Seva staff member who will ensure safety and translation as needed.
Covered expenses include airfare from Minneapolis to Kolkata, lodging, and meals. Daily transportation to Jan Seva is also covered.
Visit the Pathways to Children website for more information about Jan Seva.